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What do we mean when we call something “ugly”? Author Gretchen Henderson asks this question in her book, Ugliness: A Cultural History. Tracing the evolution of ugliness through the ages and across cultures, Henderson begins in antiquity with the Greeks’ idealized and marbled notions of beauty before detailing Roman Emperor Elagabalus’ pastime of gawking at deformed people during feasts. From medieval gargoyles to grotesque literature’s Frankenstein, Henderson meditates on ugliness as both a physical descriptor and a cultural construct used to capture something degenerate on a moral, ethical, or philosophical level. Read more >>> Gretchen Henderson reads at 6:30 p.m. at Kramerbooks, 1517 Connecticut Ave. NW. Free. (202) 387-1400. kramers.com. (Victoria Gaffney)

Gretchen Henderson‘s reading at Kramerbooks has been canceled.


Dig yourself out of the snow because Restaurant Week starts today. More than 200 restaurants—from Birch and Barley to Equinox to Kapnos—are offering three-course lunches for $22 or dinners for $35. The promotion runs through Jan. 31. Book your reservation through Restaurant Week’s official site for the chance to win prizes. Restaurant Week, ramw.org/restaurantweek. (Jessica Sidman)


Classic metal band Queensrÿche continues to tour after 30 years in the business and braves the snow for a show at the 9:30 Club. 7 p.m. at 815 V St. NW. $35.

British pop duo Oh Wonder performs its delicate ballads and electronic compositions at U Street Music Hall with opening act Pop Etc. 7:30 p.m. at 1115 U St. NW. $15.

In preparation for the Washington Jewish Film Festival, the D.C. JCC screens Remember, director Atom Egoyan‘s drama about an aging German man who vows to kill the the Nazi commandant who killed his family, starring Christopher Plummer and Martin Landau.

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